From Publishers Weekly
Thriller writer Connolly (Every Dead Thing
) turns from criminal fears to primal fears in this enchanting novel about a 12-year-old English boy, David, who is thrust into a realm where eternal stories and fairy tales assume an often gruesome reality. Books are the magic that speak to David, whose mother has died at the start of WWII after a long debilitating illness. His father remarries, and soon his stepmother is pregnant with yet another interloper who will threaten David's place in his father's life. When a portal to another world opens in time-honored fashion, David enters a land of beasts and monsters where he must undertake a quest if he is to earn his way back out. Connolly echoes many great fairy tales and legends (Little Red Riding Hood, Roland, Hansel and Gretel), but cleverly twists them to his own purposes. Despite horrific elements, this tale is never truly frightening, but is consistently entertaining as David learns lessons of bravery, loyalty and honor that all of us should learn. (Nov.)
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'The book's epic villainy, mournful tone and tested morality is the essence of Connolly. Worst of all is the Crooked Man, who ranks with the Travelling Man, the Collector and even Mr Pudd among Connolly's most memorable villains. 'THE BOOK OF LOST THINGS is peculiar and perverse and humane, with an incredibly lyrical finale ... The novel should earn the author new readers.' -- The Irish Times 'Something very special indeed' -- Mark Billingham 'A powerful, powerful writer. I got a very real chill down my spine. This is an amazing book.' -- Jeffery Deaver 'Charming, disturbing and outrageously imaginative. A tremendously exciting change of pace.' -- Lawrence Jackson, Producer of BBC Radio 4's adaptations of John Connolly's short stories 'Brilliantly creepy coming of age novel' -- Mirror